A Large Area Soft Robotic Haptic Display

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Haptic research is the study of touch. Surprisingly, both quality and availability of haptic displays are still considered a limiting factor to the impact of the field of haptic research today. Some of these limitations can potentially be overcome by soft, high-resolution displays based on soft robotics principles. We demonstrate a large area haptic display based on an array of soft robotic actuators called pneumatic unit cells (PUCs) that were previously studied as individual, stand-alone units. We address two underlying practical challenges in the design and control of such an array: reliable and efficient fabrication of a large number of PUCs and reliable and reversible interconnection of the soft actuator layer to a rigid manifold. The device was developed for a specific haptic experiment where the PUCs are actuated in groups that form concentric circles, to simulate areas of small to large size. The design concept can be adapted to address different haptics and perception questions, and may be applied as a practical soft interface in human-machine interaction.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2024 IEEE 7th International Conference on Soft Robotics, RoboSoft 2024
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)979-8-3503-8181-8
Publication statusPublished - 13 May 2024


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